Father's Day is June 17 (tick tock), and if you're looking for a really special FD brunch for your dad, consider the considerable spread from our friends at Highball & Harvest.
The brunch is from noon to 3 p.m. in the pleasantly decorated space at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando, and you and your dad can stuff yourselves silly the whole time. There will be oysters, poached shrimp and crab claws from the Ice Bar. Entrees of Smoked Chicken, Roasted Florida Snapper, Chimichurri Rubbed Skirt Steak, and Vanilla Braised Pork Belly.
There will also be Smoked Beef and Roasted Market Fish from a category called Under the Knife. (Don't mention that if your dad has recently had a hernia operation.)
Pork burgers, salads, pancakes and waffles, an omelet station and even a craft beer bar. Like I said, a considerable spread.
Cost is $99 plus tax and gratuity; kids 12 and under are $40, but they may not visit the craft beer bar. Reservations are essential and can be made by calling 407-393-4648 or emailing this address.
When I think about the top tier restaurants at Walt Disney World Resorts I usually think of Flying Fish, Citricos and California Grill, though the latter has declined somewhat in terms of experience. After a recent visit to Jiko - The Cooking Place, I'm prepared to include that Animal Kingdom Lodge restaurant in the upper echelon, too. (Victoria & Albert's is in a higher tier all by itself.)
What all of those restaurants have in common is that they are accessible without the requirement to purchase a ticket to one of the theme parks. Which is not to say there aren't good restaurants inside the parks. Certainly Hollywood Brown Derby at Disney's Hollywood Studios and Monsieur Paul at Epcot's France pavilion offer a higher standard than a basic meal.
In that category of restaurants I now include Tiffins, a surprisingly adventurous and slightly upscale restaurant appropriately located inside Animal Kingdom.
I don't know what Garp & Fuss is. I don't mean the name. Well, yes, I do mean the name, too. But I also mean that I don't know how to classify it as a restaurant.
The menu is kind of all over the place. There's a pasta dish right next to a schnitzel. Tacos, natch. Burgers, of course. A Cuban sandwich right above a Vietnamese Bahn Mi (though it's spelled on an online menu as bahni mi, which I thought might be a clever play on the French term bon ami, but apparently was just a misspelling because it is correct on the in-house menu).
There is a sandwich called Fuss that features fried chicken and another called Garp with Italian beef. Maybe I'm just overanalyzing it but I don't know what it all means.
Orlando based Earl Enterprises, which owns the Planet Hollywood and Buca di Beppo brands, announced Tuesday that it has purchased Bertucci's, a Massachusetts restaurant chain with 58 locations. The deal allows Bertucci's to exit Chapter 11.
In this episode of Compliments of the Chef, Bob Gallagher demonstrates how to make Tony Roma's North Miami Burger, one of the popular items from the original Tony Roma's. The burger has been brought back to the Orlando restaurant's menu and on Monday's at lunch you can get one for $10. So head to the restaurant at 8560 International Drive then go get the ingredients and try one yourself -- after watching the video, of course.
A couple of Disney Springs neighbors are collaborating on a fun dinner later in June. Yuki Fujinaga, the chef de cuisine at Morimoto Asia has invited James and Julie Petrakis of the Polite Pig to participate in the second Morimoto Asia Guest Chef Series. Pigs n' Pints will feature an array of Pan-Asian and Southern-inspired dishes, many of which will be true fusion dishes bridging Asia and the American South. There will also be an array of craft beers from local breweries, including Cask & Larder, Coppertail, Crooked Can Brewing Co., Red Cypress and Red Light Red Light. Sunday, June 24, from noon to 3 p.m. on the second level of Morimoto Asia. Tickets are $55 for adults and $25 for 12 and under (no beer) and you can get them here.
There will be another collaborative dinner this Sunday, June 10, in Baldwin Park between Elek Kovacs of Osprey Tavern and Huy Tin of Seito Sushi. As you may know, the two restaurants are across the street from each other and both are owned by Jason and Sue Chin. The dinner is called East Meets West, and as it turns out, Seito Sushi is on the east side of New Broad Street and Osprey is on the west. Five course, $95 or $135 with pairings. Starts at 6 p.m. on the west side of the street, but get your tickets before hand.